12 May 2016

DIGITALEUROPE reaffirms support for a global digital trade approach

DIGITALEUROPE reaffirms support for a global digital trade approach

Ahead of the FAC meeting tomorrow, we would like to reaffirm our support and commitments to a global, ambitious and offensive approach to digital trade.

ICT is global by default and enables global value chains for every sector of the economy. Europe’s Digital Single Market has to stay open and integrated within the global connected ecosystem and marketplace for European business and ideas to lead and scale up. We see huge potential in areas such as Internet of Things, e- Health, Industry 4.0.

In many ways digital trade is the new sealanes and containers of trade in the 21st century. Trade is not possible without the flow of data and digitally deliverable services. While having recognised their strategic importance, many countries are unfortunately introducing barriers to digital trade and promoting the localisation of digital goods and services. This is a trend DIGITALEUROPE asks European Member States to fight against.

In the global context Europe needs to lead by example and strive for market access and preserve openness. This can be achieved through trade agreements that promote the free flow of data, oppose forced localisation, eliminate tariffs for ICT products and remove non-tariff barriers in the ICT sector. We need a global web for online global markets. The rise of forced localisation policies and other forms of ?digital protectionism around the world in a growing sector like ICT marks a troubling shift in the global trade and economic policies. Any local content requirement has a strong impact on EU businesses – ICT and non-ICT- inside and outside Europe. But also on the worldwide economy as supply chains are global and digitally connected.

Conclusion of the negotiations for all trade agreements will continue to support the digital transformation of European Industry, especially in support of the Digital Single Market. In this regard, we also ask Member States to reaffirm their support to a solid and balanced Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership to set the gold standard for the future of world trade.

DIGITALEUROPE is looking forward to continuing working with the European Institutions to design the foundations of an ambitious EU digital trade policy.

Back to Digital trade
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